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History Makers CD: Maps and Map Keys Review by Kathy Gelzer

Linda Thornhill
Trisms Curriculum
1203 S Delaware Place
Tulsa, OK 74104-4129

This History Makers CD, a companion to the History Makers Middle School curriculum, contains map masters and answer keys for the Trisms History Maker's Student Packet. It does not include the specific mapping assignments; these are found in the student manual. The maps, which cover various historical events and explorations from Hanno (470 BC) to moon-launch sites, come in the form of a 98-page PDF. Some examples are: Viking Trade Routes, Sir Francis Drake, Voyages of Lt. James Cook, David Livingstone, the Oregon Trial, Underground Railroad Routes, and Robert Peary.

The first section contains 14 blank black-line map masters of various regions of the world, such as Europe and Africa, the Middle East, the World, and South America. The maps are labeled "Map #4, 7, 12," etc. as opposed to the region. Only one body of water is identified as well as the North or South Pole when applicable.

The second section contains the map answer keys for 37 lessons. These answer keys are "completed" maps, with water shaded light blue and land shaded pale green. When areas of land need to be distinguished, other colors are used. Routes are shown with various colored lines. The appendix provides 20 pages of the hows and whys of the Trisms curriculum, including descriptions and sample lesson plans. There is quite a bit of advertising for the products here.

Although this CD is definitely designed to be used with the History Makers program, one would be able to use these maps and keys to supplement other history courses or for other reasons. There is a list of 11 ideas for using the maps for various subject applications, such as "mark the location where a famous person was born, lived or did a great work" and "illustrate the movement of the trade winds and ocean currents."

Overall, I think this CD would be most useful--especially to those who are using History Makers.

Product review by Kathy Gelzer, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, August 2010